LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Actor Will Smith, star of “Hancock” and “Seven Pounds”, was voted the top money-making movie star of 2008, dethroning Johnny Depp in an annual poll released on Friday of movie theater owners and film buyers.
Smith, 40, is only the second African-American actor to win the Quigley poll in its 76 year history. Sidney Poitier was placed first in 1968 after the success of “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” and “In the Heat of the Night.”
Three newcomers on the 2008 list — “Iron Man” Robert Downey Jr, “Batman” star Christian Bale, and Shia LaBeouf, the 22 year-old actor in “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” — came in second, third and fourth places respectively.
Anne Hathaway, who made her name in “The Princess Diaries” and is now a Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe nominee for her role in “Rachel Getting Married”, was named a star of tomorrow. along with Chris Pine, who appeared in “Bottle Shock” and will play Captain Kirk in 2009’s “Star Trek” movie.
Perennial winner Tom Cruise did not make the Top Ten for 2008 despite being voted Number One seven times since 1983. Depp, the “Pirates of the Caribbean” star who was placed first in 2007, also did not make the 2008 list.
The Quigley Poll has been conducted every year since 1932 by the publishers of the International Motion Picture Almanac. It asks movie theater owners and film buyers to vote for the 10 stars they believe generated the most box office revenue for their theaters during the year.
Reporting by Jill Serjeant